Thursday, May 31, 2012

Housing, not zoos!

Homeless in Tokyo, Japan: an elderly man sleeping on a park bench near his belongings. The Japanese government once used police to clear the homeless from the streets in a beautification campaign but refuses to provide social security benefits to those without a fixed address in a city where the rents are sky-high. As the economic crisis deepened, unemployment & the homeless population grew, especially among the elderly. Osaka has the highest population of homeless in Japan. Many were outraged when in 2009, Osaka spent millions to purchase six koalas from Australia but hasn’t spent a dime on housing for the poor & elderly. Housing is a human right & if the government considers zoos more important than human welfare, they have to be tossed. (Photo by Shizuo Kambayashi/AP)

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